In response to the United States’ first auction of carbon dioxide (CO2) allowances as part of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), the following statement was issued today by Mark Tercek, president and CEO of The Nature Conservancy:
"State leadership is continuing to step up in the absence of national progress on the issue of climate change," said Mark Tercek, president and CEO of The Nature Conservancy. "We applaud the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states on this historic day for taking bold steps to curb their own emissions, provide funding for energy efficiency and renewable energy projects, and support strategies to help humans and nature adapt to global warming."
RGGI is an agreement among 10 Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states to limit – and ultimately reduce – the amount of carbon dioxide their power generators emit.
Of the states that have joined the Initiative, six will participate in today’s auction: Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Vermont.
RGGI’s auction process limits the amount of CO2 released into the atmosphere, but allows businesses and other organizations to trade with each other – through the buying and selling of credits – for the right to release that CO2 from their business operations.
In addition to providing a framework for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, RGGI will generate revenues to support a variety of climate related initiatives, such as energy efficiency and renewable energy development. The goal is for these investments, in turn, to lead to even further emissions reductions and greater energy savings to consumers.
The Nature Conservancy is a leading conservation organization working around the world to protect ecologically important lands and waters for nature and people. The Conservancy and its more than 1 million members have protected nearly 120 million acres worldwide. Visit The Nature Conservancy on the Web at www.nature.org.